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Haiseldean Lake

A short hike to a quiet subalpine lake, with plenty more exploring on the surrounding ridges. The forest is studded with golden larches in the fall.

Summary
Trailhead: Redfish Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 7km
Elevation: +407m
Season: late June to early October
Difficulty: Moderate
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McKean Lakes

McKean Lakes is a worthwhile alpine destination, tucked away on the edge of Valhalla Provincial Park. The road is long, the trail is steep, but the lakes are cradled beneath impressive peaks.

Summary
Trailhead: Koch Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 10.4km
Elevation: +671m
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty:  Difficult
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Red Mountain (Bonningtons)

“Red Mountain” seems to be a pretty common name in the Koots. There’s a few of them! But this one is the neighbour of Toad Mountain in the Bonnington Range above Nelson. It has the characteristic red rock, but also offers great hiking off the beaten path.

Summary
Trailhead: Giveout Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 9.2km
Elevation: +491m
Season: early July to late September
Difficulty: Moderate

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Mount Reco Loop

One of the best ridgeline hikes in the Kootenays! Hiking a loop around Mount Reco will bring you through alpine meadows surrounded by peaks. With the option to bag Reco’s summit, this is a great day in the mountains.

Summary
Trailhead: Stenson Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 9.9km
Elevation: +680m
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty: Moderate
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Grassy Mountain

Grassy Mountain is renown for its winter powder, but it’s also a great summer destination for those that don’t mind hiking off trail. You can explore the ridges which are full of spring wildflowers and offer big wide views of the Bonnington Range.

Summary
Trailhead: Munson FSR
Distance, round trip: 14km
Elevation: +663m
Season: early June to early October.
Difficulty:  Difficult
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Elephant Mountain Traverse (CBC Tower)

Going up and over Elephant Mountain is a big day. But sometimes that’s just what you need to break in those boots! This is a difficult hike with significant elevation, but it’s scenic and close to home! At each milestone, the City of Nelson shrinks further below and more and more peaks unfold from the distant valleys.

Summary
Trailhead: Pulpit Rock Trailhead or Lyon’s Bluff Trailhead
Distance, round trip: 13.5km
Elevation: +1120m
Season: mid-May to late October
Difficulty:  Difficult
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Toad Mountain via Giveout Creek

Hiking Toad Mountain via Giveout Creek FSR leads you along a forested trail to access the summit from the northern ridge. The ridge line ascent is a little less scenic than the original trail from the Silverking mine, but much easier for hikers and vehicles alike! The summit of Toad offers epic views of the Nelson and surrounding peaks!

Summary
Trailhead: Giveout Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 6.7km
Elevation: +370m
Season: early July to late September
Difficulty:  Easy

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Smallwood Lookout

The Smallwood lookout boasts one of the biggest benches with one of the biggest views. It’s part of a large mountain bike trail network, but hiking the Smallwood ridge-line as an “out and back” is an easy option with lots of reward.

Summary
Trailhead: Garrity Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 4.14km
Elevation: +153m
Season: mid-May to late October
Difficulty:  Easy
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Ward’s Ferry Trail

Ward’s Ferry Trail connects the communities of Blewett and Glade with scenic riverside hiking. Before the highway and railroad were built, Ward’s Ferry was the main option for travellers in the 1880’s to cross the Kootenay River. This historical trail passes by the site of the old ferry landing and traces remnants of wagon roads.

Summary
Trailhead: McPhee Forest Service Road or Glade Road
Distance, one way: 9.98km
Elevation: +335m (Glade to McPhee)
Season: mid-April to early November
Difficulty: Moderate
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McPhee Waterfall Loop

Everyone loves a good waterfall! And Little McPhee Falls is a two-tiered beauty that roars during the spring melt and quiets to a mossy trickle in the fall. This forested trail can be extended into a nice loop above the Kootenay River.

Summary
Trailhead: McPhee Forest Service Road
Distance, round trip: 7.66km
Elevation: +215m
Season: mid-April to early November
Difficulty:  Easy
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